Home is no place for work, it is for naps

Kwanele Ndlovu Singles Lane
It might just be that it is a myth to think remote work from office is an answer to all our myriad problems. Even the fourth revolution has its own limitation. Home chores will always remain a real distraction.
It might just be that it is a myth to think remote work from office is an answer to all our myriad problems. Even the fourth revolution has its own limitation. Home chores will always remain a real distraction.

I had always imagined the fourth industrial revolution would be liberating, and somewhat less labour intensive as technology and all its advancements relieves the burden of hard work and simplifies our daily lives.

So when the news of the spread of the corona virus pandemic hit us, and we realised just how much the proximity of our desks in those open-plan offices brought us nearer to death with every sneeze from a colleague, we all knew that this was eventually time to put our enthusiasm with technology, and claims that the "office" is backwards, to the test; help our kids with their schoolwork from home and work from home. It all sounded so easy.

When my first chance at enjoying the perks of working from home coincided with the forced closure of schools, and the unfortunate matter of the fibre line being faulty at our new home, I knew that this is not what I had signed up for.

I remember very well the encouragements from family and friend that I should maybe study teaching as it was the one career choices that guaranteed employment.

I refused because I know I do not have a single bone in me that wants to spend all day talking to kids.

Yet here I am trapped with a moody teenager whose mailbox is full of maths problems I struggled with in school, and have little desire to master.

Did I mention that he thinks this is an opportunity for him to make up for all the sleep he missed out on when he was in boarding school, being woken up at four o'clock in the morning.

There is also the matter of smart TVs.

A great invention. till now. We have no internet connection save for the little data on our phones.

This means no Netflix, no YouTube, no ShowMax and no Dstv. And hot-spotting on my phone is going to break my bank. So this has been the kid's excuse for not looking at his schooling schedule, and I really am more worried about him washing his hands regularly, and staying alive during these trying times.

And me? I can't work. I have been trying to wake my son up and get him to do some school work, or at least wash the dishes, or himself, whatever... I need him to do something.

But the house is in shambles and I am more keen on sweeping and mopping than sending emails and doing research. I took a shower as I would normally do for work.

But I am not wearing a power suit and court shoes, so my brain really does not want to tap into "lawyer mode" while I am sitting in my bedroom, in skimpy shorts and a T-shirt.

And there are two bottles of wine in this house, so... I am tempted to find out just how much inspiration comes out from a single glass of merlot at 10 in the morning.

Then suddenly, because I am home today, we discover that there is no butter, and the cold meat is spoilt. Oh, and there are no fruits and we need milk.

Now a trip to the shopping centre may just take more than the "lunch hour" I am accustomed to because there is that quality sale at one of my favourite retailers, and I am really struggling to differentiate a day off and working from home.

Also, I cannot help thinking we do not have enough toilet paper. So I drive out of the urban area and find a remote town where I can get a pack of toilet paper and sanitizers.

Maybe we needed to have test runs for home schooling and remote office work - some time in 2018, to prepare for times like these. All this just feels like an ambush, and I am ill-prepared for working at the same place I enjoy cozy naps in.

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

X